Rausch has been the business editor since September 2008, previously serving as senior business reporter. He joined the Chronicle in April 2007. He has written for newspapers in Napoleon, Ohio, Moline, Ill., and Lima, Ohio. He holds a bachelor of science in journalism from Ohio University (1992). In 2006, he received a second place award in business writing from the Association Press in Ohio.
Posted July 27, 2013 09:39 am - Updated July 30, 2013 09:41 am

June sales totals hint at rebound in housing

Though home sales fell nationally in June, they were up in Augusta.


Real estate agents sold 589 homes, the highest total for June since 2006.


We’ve been hearing other tales that signal the beginning of a housing recovery, such as multiple bids on homes and people paying closer to full asking price for desirable houses. The June results are just one more indicator.


When you add up the whole half year, agents have sold 2,804 homes in the area.


They sold 2,521 in the first half of 2012 and 2,614 in the second half, so you can see the upward trend there.


Agents have told me tales of homes selling themselves back in the heyday of 2006. If that’s where the market is headed, then sales numbers need to get to 3,300.


A THOUGHT ABOUT THE OUTDOOR STORES: OK, we’ve got Bass Pro Shops announcing a new store on Wednesday. Cabela’s announces a new store on Thursday. It was only natural to expect Gander Mountain to announce a store on Friday.


But I guess not everything happens in threes.


I was told, however, that Gander Mountain was in the discussion for each of the two locations that went to the other outdoor chains.


SYNOVUS TARP: Synovus, the regional bank that owns Augusta First Bank & Trust, has unveiled plans to repay the government bailout.


The banking company is going to hold two stock sales to repay the $968 million owed the Troubled Asset Relief Program.


The cash will amount to $680 million. There will be two stock offerings – $185 million in common stock and $130 million in preferred stock.